School Gardeners of the Year Award

Written by: Pete Henshaw | Published:
Green fingers: Pupils harvesting beetroots during a gardening lesson at Christ Church CE Primary School in south London (image: RHS/Suzanne Plunkett)

The return of the Royal Horticulture Society’s School Gardeners of the Year Award will bring with it recognition of the inspiring, green-fingered work of both pupils and school staff.

The competition returns after a three-year hiatus, with the RHS seeking to uncover innovative ways that schools have been growing before, during and since the pandemic.

The award celebrates excellence in school gardening projects and outdoor learning.

Schools across the UK are being urged to nominate pupils and staff with two award categories:

  • RHS School Gardening Team of the Year: Celebrates an exceptional team of school gardeners who have made a difference to their school environment or local community.
  • RHS School Gardening Champion of the Year: Nominations open for a passionate, green-fingered adult who has championed gardening and growing in a school, demonstrating valuable gardening skills and inspiring pupils.

This year’s judging panel includes Frances Tophill, gardening presenter and author, Matt Willer, School Gardening Champion of the Year 2018. and George Hassall, RHS Young Ambassador and Young School Gardener of the Year 2014, as well as members of the RHS team.

To enter, schools must be registered to the RHS Campaign for School Gardening, which currently supports more than 13,000 schools in the UK.

Alana Cama, RHS Schools and Groups Programme manager, said: “We know that school gardeners are harnessing the power of their plants in many ways, from providing habitats and food for wildlife to harvesting fruit and vegetables for their local community.

“There is huge potential for schools to use their growing spaces to tackle some of the biggest challenges we face. School Gardeners of the Year is an excellent opportunity for us to celebrate the hard work and dedication of all those passionate gardeners.”

Prizes for this year’s winners include national garden gift vouchers and patio glasshouses. Celebrations will be held at each of the winning schools to present the prizes and recognise their achievements.

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